Indexes for fixed income and ESG continued to grow in 2019, according to a global index survey released Tuesday by the Index Industry Association.
The number of global indexes fell to 2.96 million in 2019, from 3.73 million in 2018 and 3.29 million in 2017, but the drop could be related to an annual decommissioning process to ensure indexes are not redundant, a trade association statement said.
Fixed-income indexes saw the biggest growth by asset class, up 7.15% in 2018 and 2019. Geographically, the largest increases came from Europe, the Middle East and Africa, which now represent 33% of the total fixed income indexes, compared to 34.24% for the Americas. Global fixed-income indexes grew by 1%.
Investor demand fueled dramatic growth in environmental, social and governance indexes over the past year, rising 13.9% across equities and fixed income.
IIA CEO Rick Redding said in the statement that index providers are continuing to expand their fixed-income offerings to give investors more accurate benchmarks, while the number and variety of ESG indexes "indicate that investors are looking for benchmarks that conform to their investment objectives and beliefs."